Meet the Newbies is a blog event dedicated to introducing you to the “newbie” published debut authors. In this event, expect to learn more about the authors, their books, and silly fun facts!
Author Most Likely to Ship Everyone and Everything So Hard
Hi! I’m Michelle.
I was born in New York City, and have never lived anywhere else. (I should maybe try at some point? What’s your town like? Does it have weird bugs?)
I first learned to drive a car when I was in my twenties, which is totally normal because I’m a New Yorker, I swear! I also have two agoraphobic cats who would not be great at road trips, honestly, but they make up for that with extreme cuteness.
I am a liker of many things. These things include staying in, going out dancing, love stories, beach air, milkshakes, pop songs, and Luna Lovegood.
I am also a disliker of things, namely my terrible memory (though I’ll never forget the word that cost me the Spelling Bee in third grade: Dinosaur. Dinosaur. GOD. Just . . . It’s fine.), talking on the phone, that gross noise people make when they eat, and humidity. Blech.
Nickname: It is one of my greatest disappointments that I never got the nickname Elle. But some of my friends do call me Pixie! (Long story.)
First Day of School: May 3, 2016
Homeroom: Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollins
Extracurricular Activities: Impromptu Dance - Break Club, Leslie Knope Appreciation Society, Emoji Enthusiasts, Overthinkers of America
Favorite Class: Advanced Bookstore Browsing
Favorite Quote/Motto: “I wish I could show you, when you are lonely or in darkness, the astonishing light of your own being.” —Hafiz
When did you know that you wanted to be an author?
Michelle: This is such an interesting question for me, because I am not one of those writers who saw the light at a young age! Despite being an A+ daydreamer, I was already in high school when it clicked that I even enjoyed writing fiction. And all through college, what I really wanted to do was write for television and/or film. (My college notebooks are FILLED with dialogue I'd write during class instead of like, actual class notes.) And then it wasn't until after college that I fell in love with novel writing. So, it did take me a bit to figure it out. But I like to think of it as a slow burn romance. ;-)
What are some of your pet peeves?
Michelle: I'm going to hold back on this one so as to maintain an image of being 100% cool and a negative percentage of neurotic. *puts on sunglasses* But my tip-top, #1 pet peeve is loud eaters. My blood pressure went up just typing that. I want to burrow under the earth when I'm around any loud eating mouth noises. OMG. And another biggie for me is music/book snobs. I just have no time for that. Take your snobbery elsewhere!
Which of the other Sweet Sixteen authors would you like to take a spontaneous road trip with, and why?
Michelle: Firstly, I <3 this question so much. Secondly, I'm going to cheat! The Sweet Sixteens are the most wonderful group of talented human starbursts, so I'm proposing a road trip caravan for all 100+ of us. Imagine the snacks!
What would make you stop reading a book?
Michelle: Oh, gosh. I'd say not connecting with characters is what would pull me up short. If I'm not invested in their journey, it's probably a good idea to move on. We all have to protect our time, you know? But the best part of the reading experience is that it's different for everyone. A book you might not have connected with at all could be my absolute favorite.
What fictional character is most like you? (It can be one of your own characters, or a character from another book or movie!)
Michelle: All right, so, the character that came to mind immediately is Liz Lemon from 30 ROCK. She's nerdy, self-deprecating, and occasionally awkward, but she's also kind of comfortable with all that. And she loves staying in, sweater weather, and when Muppets present at awards shows. She is my Patronus -- or maybe I'm hers?
What is your favorite non-spoilery quote or moment from your own book?
Michelle: Ooh! I'm cheating here, too, if that's okay? One of my favorites is when Cloudy and Kyle first arrive in Los Angeles. They're at a club to see an all-girls Beatles tribute band perform, and it's such a fun, transformative scene for them. But there's also a scene later on in the book when Cloudy and Kyle are in Sedona. There's a moment when they're speaking to each other before heading off to a birthday party, and it makes me swoon so hard. (Swooning is my favorite!)
What is one thing that you want your readers to take away from reading The Way Back To You?
Michelle: I think something that was really important to Mindi and me as we wrote TWBTY was showing the ways Cloudy and Kyle were grieving Ashlyn. The depth of their pain and loss was similar, but they expressed it so dissimilarly. Grief is an incredibly personal thing. We all feel it and work through it differently. We don't have to understand it all the time. All we can really do is respect what people are going through and show up for them however they need us to.
Brittany: Thank you, Michelle for doing this interview with me! It was a pleasure ^_^
Everyone, make sure to check out Michelle and her co-author Mindi's book The Way Back To You and enter the giveaway below!
The Way Back to You by Michelle Andreani & Mindi Scott
Publisher: Katherine Tegan Books
Publication Date: May 3, 2016
Buy it: Amazon | B&N | Book Depository
In this witty, heart-tugging novel, two teens take a spontaneous road trip across the Southwest to meet three strangers who received the life-saving organs of their late best friend—charting a journey of loss, hope, and love along the way.
Six months ago, Ashlyn Montiel died in a bike accident.
Her best friend Cloudy is keeping it together, at least on the outside. Cloudy’s insides are a different story: tangled, confused, heartbroken.
Kyle is falling apart, and everyone can tell. Ashlyn was his girlfriend, and when she died, a part of him went with her. Maybe the only part he cares about anymore.
As the two people who loved Ashlyn best, Cloudy and Kyle should be able to lean on each other. But after a terrible mistake last year, they're barely speaking. So when Cloudy discovers that Ashlyn’s organs were donated after her death and the Montiel family has been in touch with three of the recipients, she does something a little bit crazy and a lot of out character: she steals the letters and convinces Kyle to go on a winter break road trip with her, from Oregon to California to Arizona to Nevada. Maybe if they see the recipients—the people whose lives were saved by Ashlyn’s death—the world will open up again. Or maybe it will be a huge mistake.
With hundreds of miles in front of them, a stowaway kitten, and a list of people who are alive because of Ashlyn, Cloudy and Kyle just may find their way to back to her...and to each other.